Civilizing the Economy A New Economics of Provision

Reflections on Property Relations

Posted Nov 18, 2012 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, No Comments

In Smithian economics, human freedom means the capacity to sell one’s labor.  In fact, the difference between slave labor and free labor was precisely that slaves did not own their labor, but were owned as labor. As Adam Smith famously said, echoing John Locke:

The property which every man has in his own labour, as it is the foundation of all other property, so it is the most sacred and inviolable.

Civic Justice

Posted Feb 6, 2012 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, No Comments

As a general principle, one can say that justice means treating equals equally and un-equals unequally or treating people as they deserve to be treated.  What this formula does not disclose, however, is who is deciding how to treat whom.  “Who are we when we decide who is equal and who is unequal?” 

Libertarianism, Adam Smith, and property relations

Posted Nov 20, 2010 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, 8 Comments

If you want to understand the foundation of libertarianism, there is no better place to look than Adam Smith’s view of property relations.

Marvin T. Brown, Ph.D teaches business and organizational ethics at the University of San Francisco and Saybrook University in San Francisco.

This book is the culmination of 30 years of teaching and writing on business and society from a communicative perspective. Visit for more information.

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